Cheese Gougères

Cheese Gougères

This Burgundian treatment of choux pastry is baked in a medium oven so the dough does not puff up hollow, as it does when making éclairs. This version is bite-sized and so chock-full of delicious ingredients that a separate filling is not needed. (We’ve given you four fillings to choose from.)

The puffs look so perfect you won’t believe how simply and quickly they come together. Bake these gougères up to 1 week ahead and freeze them, or make them the morning of the party and reheat in a 350°f oven for
7 to 10 minutes just before serving.

Gougère Dough
2 cups water
1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
1 cup butter
2 cups all-purpose flour
8 large eggs

Cheddar-apple Filling
4 cups old Cheddar cheese, in 3/8-inch cubes
4 cups baking apples (such as Royal Gala), peeled and cored, in 3/8-inch cubes

Spicy Jack Filling
4 cups spicy jack cheese cut in cubes
2 cups dry black olives, pitted and quartered
2 cups chopped green onion

Feta-olive Filling
4 cups feta cheese, in 3/8-inch cubes
1 cup slivered sun-dried tomatoes
2 cups green pepper, in 3/8-inch cubes
1 cup green olives, pitted and chopped

Prosciutto-parmesan Filling
1/2 cup thinly sliced green onion
1/2 cup prosciutto, in 3/8-inch cubes
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 400°f. Line several baking sheets with parchment paper.

In a medium saucepan on high heat, bring water, salt, sugar and butter to a full rolling boil until butter melts. Reduce the heat to medium. Add flour all at once and cook, stirring constantly, until the mixture forms a ball and comes away from the sides of the pan. Remove from the heat and cool for 4 minutes.

Transfer the mixture to a food processor, add eggs and process until completely incorporated. (If mixing by hand, beat in eggs one at a time, being sure to incorporate each egg before adding the next one.) Scrape the mixture into a large bowl. Mix the ingredients from your selected filling into the dough and stir until evenly incorporated.

Using two spoons, form the mixture into 1 1/4-inch balls and drop onto the baking sheets. Bake 10 minutes, reduce the heat to 350°f and bake for another 15 to 20 minutes, or until gougères are light and golden. Serve warm or at room temperature. Makes about 80 gougères

From the book The Cocktail Chef. C2006, by Dinah Koo and Janice Poon, photographs by Paul Rozario. John Szabo, is Canada’s first Master Sommelier, earning the title from the internationally recognized Court of Master Sommeliers in 2004. Published by Douglas & McIntyre, Ltd. Reprinted with permission of the publisher. You can buy this book in major bookstores and online from Amazon, Chapters, Barnes & Noble, and others.

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